A bid opening occurred Friday for two Hoopeston demolitions through the Central Illinois Land Bank Authority (CILBA).

The properties to be demolished are 624 and 628 E. McCracken St., Hoopeston. The land bank has spent $175,000 on 10 demolitions in Hoopeston during the last nine months with a $125,000 Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) Strong Communities Program grant and a $50,000 match from the city.

CILBA has $100,000 left from the Hoopeston Retirement Village Foundation to keep anti-blight work going in 2022.

Kellie Ferrell, land bank board member and Hoopeston city council member said, “these two properties have been real problems for the city with squatters and public safety issues that result, like fires. This is the first time the city is doing ‘fast track’ demolitions and the land bank has helped us take a proactive approach to problem properties that couldn’t simply be purchased from the county trustee for $800 at the fall auction.”

After this round of demolitions, CILBA will be doing a larger demolition request for proposal (RFP) for properties the land bank owns.

This round will include four demolitions in Rankin, two in Ridge Farm, one in Westville and one in Hoopeston. The asbestos testing for these properties was done in early July. When asbestos reports are completed, the land bank will issue the demolition RFP.

Additionally, CILBA will then help Georgetown and Westville advance ‘fast track’ demolition projects as part of the IHDA Strong Communities Program grants. The land bank wrote grant applications for Georgetown, Rankin, Ridge Farm and Westville. They were all awarded $45,000 and the land bank is doing all the project management and legal work to advance projects.

CILBA Executive Director Mike Davis said, “the land bank is really excited to have done $250,000 worth of demolitions the last few months in Vermilion County and we’re ready to deploy the next $250,000. The most important part of this work is helping communities like Hoopeston, Georgetown, Westville and others use property code in place to take a proactive approach on problem properties instead of watching buildings fall in on themselves for 10-plus years. There’s plenty of opportunity to scale this work if CILBA has more resources.”

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